Dolphins teammates defend Incognito
The Sports Xchange
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill said he was never aware there was a problem between Incognito and Martin. Tannehill said two weeks ago he would have described Incognito as Martin’s best friend on the team.
“I hear all these warning signs that we were supposed to see,” Tannehill said. “(Martin) was the same guy all the time. Pretty quiet, just kind of went about his business, joked around here and there, but overall a quiet guy, so it’s tough to see warning signs when a guy doesn’t change.”
Many players, such as guard John Jerry, said they don’t consider Incognito, who is white, a racist. Incognito used the “n-word” in a voicemail to Martin during the summer.
“That was my first time actually ever hearing him say something like that,” said Jerry, who is black, “so I don’t take it the wrong way because I know him personally. It might rub off on some people a different way, but it doesn’t rub off on me that way.
“Everybody’s different, so everybody’s going to take it the way that they want to take it. It doesn’t bother me at all.”
Wide receiver Brian Hartline said earlier in the year Martin allowed others in the locker room to hear the voicemail, that Martin considered it a joke.
“It’s like they say,” Hartline said, “the people who can hurt you the most are the ones closest to you, and that’s exactly what happened.”
Defensive end Cam Wake said he is tired of all the assaults on his team’s character because of the episode. As for how things have gone down, Wake summed it up this way:
“Surprised? Yes. Disappointed? Yes. But I think more than anything what’s been bothering me has kind of been the things that you hear from outside this locker room, about things that maybe undermine the integrity of the leadership, the type of players, the class of guys we have here, the class of this organization.
“I’ve been here five years. Coach (Joe) Philbin has done nothing but turn this organization in a positive direction from top to bottom, and to hear some things about what’s not going on here, what is going on here, it’s unfortunate, it’s wrong, it’s ridiculous, it’s hard to hear.”